The 2018 Field Season

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Because I am in the last year of PhD program, I was unable to go to Western Australia for the whole field season. But I did get the chance to head to the field site in WA for a couple of short stays. I helped at the beginning of the season to move around equipment and to install some PRS probes for a side project. 

PRS Probes in the ground surrounding a plot with focal indidividuals marked with toothpicks and yarn.

PRS Probes in the ground surrounding a plot with focal indidividuals marked with toothpicks and yarn.

Then I came back in late August to collect species composition data and to help set up some other experiments that the 2018 field crew are working on. 

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I was a bit worried this year about the rains - April got 0.0mm and May got less than average. I was crossing my fingers that we would not have a drought again this year... AND June, July & August all got close to double the long-term average amount of rainfall for each month - What a relief! Upon my second visit to the field, I saw carpets of pink, white, and yellow flowers about - certainly not like last year during the drought. 

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I even went back to my old haunting ground to grab a picture from the same place I had 2 years before (L to R; 2018, 2017, 2016 pictures). The 2018 picture was not exactly 1 year apart from the 2017/2016 pictures (I was short 2 weeks) but you can already tell it is quite green and flowers are starting to pop out!